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556,750 children miss vaccination in Kano, Jigawa, Katsina — UNICEF

The United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) Kano Field Office has disclosed that 556,750 children in Kano, Jigawa, and Katsina have not received a single dose…

The United Nations Children Fund (UNICEF) Kano Field Office has disclosed that 556,750 children in Kano, Jigawa, and Katsina have not received a single dose of vaccination, sparking fears of vulnerability to preventable diseases.

Mr. Michael Banda, Officer-in-Charge of the UNICEF Field Office Kano, expressed these concerns during a media dialogue on vaccines and immunisation held in Kano, represented by Mr. Rahama Rihood Mohammed Farah, Chief of Field Office.

Banda emphasised the critical role of immunisation in protecting children from vaccine-preventable diseases, including polio.

He stressed the urgent need for collaborative efforts among government agencies, development partners, religious and traditional leaders, communities, NGOs, CSOs, and the media to ensure every Nigerian child under five receives vaccination against preventable diseases.

He said, “There are genuine concerns in recent times regarding the incidence of zero doze children and vaccine hesitancy. As the data show, in three states of Kano, Jigawa and Katsina, supported by the UNICEF Kano Field Office, we have 556,750 children who have not received one single dose of vaccination.

“These are referred to as zero dose children. Such children are extremely vulnerable to vaccine-preventable diseases, including polio. This is unacceptable and must be tackled frontally.”

Highlighting the significance of addressing misinformation and vaccine hesitancy, Banda underscored the media’s pivotal role in disseminating accurate information to combat vaccine-preventable disease outbreaks.

Moreover, he emphasised the profound impact of good health on economic growth, poverty reduction, and human capital development. Banda advocated for investments in a functional Primary Healthcare System, stating its critical role in ensuring the well-being of children and the nation’s productivity.

While acknowledging Nigeria’s progress in immunisation and maternal and child health, Banda stressed the need for continued efforts to strengthen the Primary Health Care System. He pledged UNICEF’s ongoing support to the government in bolstering the primary healthcare system under the Primary Health Care Under One Roof (PHCUR) policy.

 

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